JACKSONVILLE - Fleming Island High freshman distance runner John Keester IV continued his assault on school records with a sterling first place finish at the prestigious Bob Hayes Invitational track …
JACKSONVILLE - Fleming Island High freshman distance runner John Keester IV continued his assault on school records with a sterling first place finish at the prestigious Bob Hayes Invitational track meet at Raines High School, one of the premiere race events in all America.
On top of Keester’s winning nine minute, 40.99 second, effort in the 3200, after a series of just under 10 minutes efforts in recent races, Fleming Island senior Emma Millson stamped out her own winning effort with an 11:32.52 best effort to win by nearly 15 seconds over the Bob Hayes field; notably rival Lauren Conover of Mandarin who finished in 11:47.24. University Christian junior Laci Watford was third in 12:09.04. Watford had finished second in the Lewis Siplin 1600 meters earlier in the day with a 5:23.57 effort and finished fourth in the 800 in 2:26.38 with Fleming Island’s Kaitlyn Scherer fifth in 2:33.12. Also in the 1600, Fleming Island junior Mei Chiang was fifth in 5:27.77.
The consistency of the Fleming Island distance crew was evident with senior Kameron Wallizada right behind Keester in the 3200 at 9:43.56. Senior Jayden Scherer blasted in with a 4:37.38 in the 1600 for seventh place with teammate Michael Lyon, a senior, in 10th at 4:44.06.
Clay County High School Track Championships
Orange Park High School
Friday, March 26
In the past two weeks, the Fleming Island boys have landed a handful of sub-4:30 1600s that will bode well for relays and state meet team points.
For the fast dudes, Orange Park High’s sprint crew, led by Markez Sermons, hurdler Joel Childs, Christopher Arias and freshman Jermel Brown took 13th in the always exciting 4 x 400 relay in 3:39.32. Raines won the event in 3:24.32.
For the girls, Orange Park took 12th in the 4 x 400; in 4:24.45 with BriAnna Johnson, Bryanah Johnson, Ny’ene Williams and DeMia Harris transporting the baton. Middleburg was 14th; Molly Burt, Tera Mckenzie, Stephanie Morelus and Emma Mussante, in 4:29.73.
In another marquis Bob Hayes event, the 4 x 100, Orange Park took fifth with Sermons, William Restall, Nolan Chambers and Larry Thomas in 43.49. American Heritage won in 42.32.
In hurdles, Fleming Island record holder Isabella Flores was fifth in the 300 hurdles with a 47.16 effor with 42.01 winning from Amanda Kinloch of North Miami.
In throwing and jumping events, Keystone Heights Caleb Moncrief took first in the discus at 131 feet, six inches with Middleburg High’s Wyatt Underwood third at 130’-2”. Underwood and Moncrief went 1-2 in the Middleburg Bronco Bob meet a week prior with throws over 135 feet. Underwood would get 16th in the shot put with teammate Kalani Robles 13th with a 38’-8.75” put.
In high jump, Fleming Island’s Cameron Mackenzie won at 6’2”.
In pole vault, with extreme windy conditions, Fleming Island’s Joseph Mercado won at 11’-11.75”.
In triple jump, Orange Park basketball standout Josiah Sabino was eighth with a 40’-1” effort. Bradford’s Adontae Balfour won at 44’-.25”.
For the girls weight events and jumps, Orange Park’s Tanzania McKay was sixth in discus at 96’-4” with teammate Mychaela Parker 14th in shot put at 31’-10.75”.
In girls high jump, Gabrielle Flores, a freshman at Fleming Island, was second at 5’-2.25” with teammate Madelyn Thompson fourth at 4’-7.75”.
In triple jump, Middleburg’s Cheyna Hudson was eighth at 32’-.75”.
Next up is the Clay County Championships on Fri., March 26 at Orange Park High School.
Broncos snag Bronco Invite titles
By Randy Lefko
MIDDLEBURG - With strong efforts in the throwing and jumping events, plus two top three finishes for distance runner Emma Mussante, the Middleburg High girls and boys track teams both won team titles at the Middleburg Bronco Invitational Track Meet held March 12.
Mussante, a recent signee to Florida Southern College, battled Clay High’s Ulyana Damme in both distance events; the 1600 and the 3200, and came home with a first in the 1600 and second in the 3200. Both girls, state cross country athletes in the fall, stayed close with Mussante winning the mile in five minutes, 33.85 seconds and Damme in at 5:37.30.
In the 3200, Damme won at 12:20.95 with Mussante at 12:26.85. St. Johns Country Day School eighth grader Rebecca Stratton was third in both events.
In the throwing events, Wyatt Underwood continued his ascent as a state ranked discus thrower, but had close company with Keystone Heights’ Caleb Moncrief. Underwood, on his final throw, edged Moncrief with a 137’-7” toss with Moncrief just behind at 136’-5”. Clay’s Desiron Gantt was third at 120’-10”.
In the shot put, Gantt won over teammate Al’Querious Ray with Moncrief third.
Middleburg’s girls; Sophia Parish and Mckenzie Brown finished first and third in shotput; 29’-11.5” and 26’-7” with Clay’s Kenya Tinajero second at 28-1”. Parisha also won the shot put at 29’-11.5”.
Middleburg got key team points in the javelin with Alexander Wall powering to a 138’-1” win over Ray’s 129’-8”. The Broncos got third in the event with Carter Smith at 125’-7”.
Middleburg’s girls; Cara Douglas and Alyssa Batten went 1-2 in javelin; 89’05” and 84’-8”.
In the high jump and pole vault, Middleburg got wins from Hayden Shaw; 5’-11.5”, and Rylan Kaczetow; 9’-6.25”.
Middleburg’s girls got big team points with a 1-2-3 finish in the 100 meter dash led by freshman sensation Nya Russell’s winning 13.58. Behind Russell, Stephanie Morelus and Cheyna Kidson, both seniors, were a step off with splits of 13.77 and 13.82.
After winning the high jump, Middleburg’s Molly Burt took second in the 400.